Thursday, December 04, 2008

Ears to hear

The Christian Bible quotes Jesus as saying , "be careful how you hear", this expression has always stood out to me as odd. Be careful what you say; now that makes sense; but why would I need to be careful about what I hear? It shouldn't matter how we hear, we should simply hear it, we should get the chance to think about it and if we like it, we can take it in, if not, we can reject it.

I suppose that this phrase means that I ought to be careful on how we interpret and process what is said. This phrase implies that it is troublesome if we hear incorrectly. The logical converse of that is equally as true, there is benefit if we hear the in the right way. We should not take things out of context, nor inadvertently misunderstand what was intended to be heard.

As a side note, I am a professional eavesdropper; if I am standing in a line, I am listening in on a conversation. It amazes me what people will talk about in public. People in line at the local Starbucks will talk about a range of subjects in the 10-minutes it takes to get from the front-door to the counter. They will talk about politics, religion, genomes, black–holes, aliens, and a myriad of other subjects.

I constantly overhear arguments about various philosophical positions and, once in a great while, a person will be "hell–bent" to convince others of what ever illusion they may be suffering at the present moment; just hearing it irritates me (I suppose that is my problem for eavesdropping in the first place).

I propose that part of the problem derives from of an out of balance defense mechanism, for me, that means, the overwhelming urge to fight about something, it helps us to feel connected engaged and involved.

This is the reason I am suggesting that we need to be careful what we hear and how we hear it. I don't need to be offended at what you say; I don't have to slay every dragon; I don't have to champion every cause. My mom used to tell me to be careful when arguing with stupid people; people who are watching may not be able to tell the difference.

I can decisively live in peace. I believe we can live at peace with God, live at peace with others and live with peace with ourselves if we can just quiet our minds long enough to attain it.

The Hitchhiker
Victor Manning